tv [untitled] July 4, 2011 3:31pm-4:01pm EDT
. to build a joint system with russia doesn't find it necessary to provide moscow with legal guarantees that. the country. deeper into a stalemate. germany u. turns on its policy of abstaining from the conflict a bomb. general. to enter a not guilty plea on his behalf and that it faces charges including genocide carried out in the balkans war. accuse the hague of justice. i'll be back in less than thirty minutes from now as the news continues here in the meantime cross-talk
. discuss what the u.s. withdrawal might mean for the kurdish community in iraq and whether fears of separatism and ethnic clashes might persuade the americans to stay. ok. welcome to cross talk i'm peter lavelle as the u.s. starts its military withdrawal from iraq what does faith hold for the kurds is post invasion iraqi administratively in democratically strong enough to keep the country intact and if the kurds strive towards an independent state what is stopping. you. to cross-talk the fate of the kurds i'm joined by pressure was fed in washington he's an independent
journalist in new york we cross to brendan o'leary he is the louder professor of political science at the university of pennsylvania and his most recent book is how to get out of iraq with the integrity and in london we have sami ramadani he's a senior lecturer in sociology at london metropolitan university all right gentlemen this is cross talk that means you can jump in anytime you want and i very much encourage it but first let's take a look at a report about the future facing the kurds following the u.s. withdrawal from iraq. eight years after the u.s. led invasion of iraq washington is negotiating its withdrawal from this war torn country is forty six thousand u.s. troops prepare to leave iraq is integrity and fragile democracy are threatened by the brewing animosity between arabs and kurds a factor that has made questionable the plan of a complete pullout i believe that we should take whatever steps are necessary to make sure that we protect whatever progress we have made there. largely
marginalized by iraqi arabs the kurdish minority has long since been vying for a form of independence which given the sweep of the arab spring could now be more possible than ever and if established kurdish state who could potentially entailed the breakup of iraq as well as changing the border of neighboring syria turkey and iran all home to significant kurdish minorities no other place in iraq symbolizes the tensions separating baghdad and kurdish leaders more than the province of kirk a source of some twenty percent of iraq's oil reserves who has no official legal status iraqi arabs turkmens and kurds who claims to it under article one forty of the iraqi constitution the dispute over who is supposed to be resolved with a referendum we saw no reason why there should be any more. implementation of article one for three. i think when that happens even other nationalities living in those areas would have
a better chance of. having a better security and so because now it's like a gray area no one has full responsibility of doing what is best for the people however the vote has been continuously delayed due to political discord and violence in the region and to date neither arab nor kurdish leaders have been willing to yield their rights to the land currently and entire us division is deployed to for security in the disputed region and come december thirty first the . u.s. withdrawal could trigger a bloody conflict. in terms of security when the us leaves there will be no independent security force right now the security is friendly the kurdish side of the city this is the truth when the u.s. leaves things will get worse there will be conflict arabs will stand up and pray to say with this well. with words we will begin to. say.
thank you very much whether or not washington decides to leave behind a contingent of u.s. troops in iraq the kurds have a historic opportunity in their trials towards some term and nothing in their history suggests that they will be deterred from pursuing a bid for statehood. for cross-talk r.t. . ok officials and washington if i can go to you first here as we discerned that report given the circumstances of the withdrawal of the american withdrawal from iraq and what we call the arab spring here what is stopping the kurds from really going for an independent state something that they have strived for for a very long time now and the circumstances to do that are probably better now than ever before what's stopping them. thank you for giving the opportunity to be under show i think there are a of the reasons that stops the kurds from declaring independence states economic and political geopolitical and and there's not there's not one single
reason that says this is the wonder i think the invasion has helped the kurds have a better. foot step in the political spectrum of the middle east however it hasn't evolved into something that could be the seeds of a state and let's not forget that. the home inside of the kurdistan region is not yet suitable and ready for its statehood there is aspiration there is hope that is and work towards that. all the political pragmatists the leaders know that. declaring a state right now is not the ultimate. solution to the case that's why do clinching to baghdad that's why they're. the most active
negotiators in settling issues that are. infesting baghdad in terms of political process and government formation and security so the kurds for now are considering themselves part of iraq but not for long let's let's speak up to the withdrawal of the of the us forces ben and if i can go to you i mean there's a nice saying the appetite comes with the eating and once the americans do leave to what degree i mean they're keeping something on the ground most likely irrespective what people white house says or the pentagon says but i mean there's a historic moment right here and we all know that iraq is in political deadlock right now the kurds are kingmakers and if this goes on for much longer the kurds will say you know go ahead guys i mean you figure now we've got oil we have we have unity for the most part in and the lands of the kurds i mean they have a lot of cards to play right now and i'd like to throw in the arab spring in the background about self-determination and and creating
a better civil society they are good they have a lot going for them go ahead. the kurdistan regional government is a very secure region it's the best organized part of iraq and it's very important to understand that the kurdish leadership is not planning a bid for independence even if it gets excellent opportunities and that's because kurds know historically that if they seek independence that would invite the negative intervention of the neighboring powers in particular turkey and iran by contrast at this moment the kurds have the ability to reshape iraq they more or less designed its constitution in conjunction with its partners so they have every opportunity to make their influence felt indeed with the departure of the americans they will be the only part of iraq that is reliably pro-american so i would expect them to use their leverage to ensure that there will be american troops patrolling the disputed territories they'll be working hard to ensure that their recent
successful detente with the government of turkey continues and they continue to attract inward investment if the kurds were to take the risk of going for independence that might damage all of the successful inward investment they've made it would also mean that they'd have to devote almost the entirety of their resources to military needs and there they don't want to do that they've come a long way in the last decade they don't want to lose the gains of that last decade sam if i can go to you we heard the word leverage and i think that's probably the most important word when we look at the withdrawal of american troops i mean how much can the kurds get from baghdad ok i mean we they were everyone's watching each other across the the the the so-called border where the kurds the kurdish lands been relatively quiet could sit considering the violence since two thousand and three what can they get from baghdad and how resistance is bad baghdad going to be and when giving anything. when you say baghdad i mean the racket president scared.
representatives of the two leading care dish. governing parties leading pows including the foreign minister and so on so they have pretty substantial influence and baghdad and generally iraqi policies the major ones have been decided with the consent or support of the kurdish leadership over the past three or tick union of kurdistan and the k d p the kurdistan democratic party. at this point i would like to take issue with one or two of the premise is both an interruption and maybe politically in what brendan was saying as if there is a kind of i knew more city or a big historical clash between the care dish people on the other people i think this is a myth we've had that oppressive regimes like saddam's regime attacking the care dish people but there hasn't been this historic people against people real tensions
or or quarrels or fights historically in iraq in fact very people a very few people seem to know that there are about ten million kurdish people in baghdad the capital this is more than more cares than cares and the kurdish you know that is that is to. say i think i think you. know no it is not nonsense to me because the kurdish people live where they care to pull advice and the cards i know i know you would like you would like to divide the iraqi people like you're attempting just now but if you let me finish a lot of kurdish people out entitlement it with arabs with total commands and so on and there isn't this rigid ethnic demarcation like you might want to pretend brendan historically the care of the shannara people. how of the common interests joint struggles against. our right for democracy for freedom so the so you
have to same time to look this is a me but the same time in the aspirations of the kurds have been always slowed down if not punished when they do have aspirations brenden you want to reply to that go ahead i certainly do i think it's it is true that kurds and arabs contain large numbers of people willing to make iraq work as a federation but it is absolute nonsense to deny the historical animosities between arabs and kurds and to deny that successive arab regimes carried out genocide ethnic expulsion and coercive assimilation against large denied hours of. the recent south well. you mention the past and you know i did not do that i'd actually i let you speak i'd like you to get i'd like you to give me the opportunity to start i dismiss discouraged. i'm not distorting what you said i listened carefully . people think that sat down to really care that there was
a large will you let me finish with you that we let me finish please people think wrongly that there's a large kurdish population in baghdad there used to be the faily kurds were expelled from baghdad by saddam's regime if we look at the vote now kurdish parties in and in federal elections it is a minuscule vote surprising i'm afraid i'm going to interrupt you i'll let you finish and we come back from the break and after that short break we'll continue our discussion on the current state with our team. spent in the military a journalist i just saw the waste go in the u.s. contractors there's kind of wasting their time trying to get killed three.
zero and. i thought all along the length of the stuff to see about five hundred muslims a huge disagreement twenty seven days in new going to publicize the people invited to come on to the site in the lead space these people started the base of the dialogue is just because the chanting the soldiers waving the circumstance. to me. please. just speak.
seemed. a leg. or an. hunger for the full story we've had for. the biggest issues get a human voice ceased to face with the news maker. says i am who i am sixty six female. welcome back to rostock i'm peter lavelle to remind you we're talking about the fate of the kurds as the u.s. plans its withdrawal from iraq. and you can. still
say. ok brennan thank you to finish up what you were saying before the break here i mean there has been historically a lot of animosity i'd like you know what degree or another we can discuss in this program go right ahead. well what i think is important is to look forward and there are two core difficulties in relations between arabs and kurds as we go forward the first is that many arab politicians in baghdad wish to recentre lies iraq in particular the control over natural resources and that's in flat contradiction with the constitution of iraq of two thousand and five which was deliberately designed to ensure that each part of iraq arab provinces as well as kurdish majority areas could govern themselves and develop themselves if that program of the constitution is implemented i think all of the historical animosities between kurds and arabs can be calm and the second difficulty arises as as was indicated in your program in
the areas of the disputed territories those territories are disputed precisely because of past programs of ethnic expulsion carried out largely by saddam's regime but also by previous arab governments not everything done bad by arabs historically was done by saddam or those who were involved as well so the key thing that international policymakers and domestic iraqi citizens have to be focused on is how to ensure those two particular disputes over natural resources and over the disputed territories don't generate further conflict between kurds and arabs i think that can. be done is to follow the constitution jump in the way developments as one nation is not only to not only not only to implement article one forty but to encourage proper power sharing arrangements with encourage governorate sharing arrangements that would include an arab burden. on the question all share power in this particular area all right sami real quick and then we're going to washington go ahead sure sure i think trend brendan again is pledging this caddish animosity
better is no animosity between the kaddish an arab peoples that we've had that oppressive regimes specialist. and by the way let to brandon this regime killed more arabs than cared for. our information and the nine hundred ninety one uprising chemical weapons and so on he's killed more arabs than care so to pretend that this was an arab book government just killing kurds as absolutely historically in court act applies to all is a sitting president president of the government was denied us and reagan was denied this season was designed on earth he had a gentleman here let me just say here let's go to washington go ahead throw in your two cents you're going to be very patient. i think i think it's not over inflated to mention the animosity among kurds and arabs and has occurred as i have lived in
kurdistan during the invasion i have covered the invasion i have sensed those things myself that is a historical. even if you don't want to call it any more said the disagreement at this liking. it at least from the curse words the arabs and of course it's shared by the arabs in a great deal. but they both know the kurds and the arabs both know that they are forced to live in iraq the arabs claim that iraq is their. member of the arab league the kurds believe every individual of them believe that they are forced to be part of that country and that has created any must be and it's very naive and simple to assume that just because regime like saddam's regime or any previous regimes have have have. caused destruction and
killing of the kurds does not in the minds of the public. give. does not release the general arab population of iraq from those acts to people do not think that the those regimes were. abstract entities that came from the sky and did those i mean most people do believe. that iris ok let's let's let's move forward to the end of this year brandon and i to go to you here do you see that there are elements of that within the pentagon and maybe even the white house and in baghdad that would use the excuse of possible tension between arabs and kurds to maine to maintain a an american presence a larger presence than what the americans agreed to a few years ago meaning we can't leave now because will be a civil war. i think it won't be an excuse i think there will be a strong request from the government of the kurdistan region together with some responsible arab politicians in baghdad for there to be a continuing arab and sari
a continuing american presence mediating between the arab majority army in the south and the forces of the kurdish peshmerga in the north and i think that that will be essential to ensure that there's a stable resolution of the disputed territories if there's an american in a responsible american departure without the issue of the disputed territories having been resolved then there's a high likelihood of renewed conflict even if those responsible leadership on each side because actions on the ground in particular the actions of sunni arab insurgents might destabilize matters so there's a real risk and it won't be an excuse the americans would be absolutely delighted to get completely out of iraq barack obama would be like it because it will look good for his election campaign so the so the idea that the americans are maneuvering in order to stay in iraq is simply misplaced there are so do things isley there is a serious dispute ahead all right it's going to larger than the irish afraid to go
to washington. i think i think the left the leaving of the americans and keeping some forces in there to to to halt to put a put a stop to a civil war will repeat the same scenario of u.s. troops remaining in korea up to this day there's no there's not going to be an end to this. at this bomb to explode this this disputed territories the article one hundred forty of the constitution having not been implemented the those territories have not issues to their disagreements on those issues have not been resolved yet will only be delayed but not solved unless those. this article is implemented those territories will be returned to people who own the ownership there is no claim of those things and these things have not been happening due to
political disagreement in baghdad and the arabs do not want this because they already have gained territory that there is very very clear things that we know that are done during saddam's time that can be resolved for example that town of. two which is a major kurdish town has been the tast from kirkuk and next to to crete which is a majority of the in province which is a majority arab province these these shiftings and playing down did have created those issues that need to be resolved because if cook is returned to the nine hundred fifty eight demography of whatever. admission of unit of co cook province at the time was things will change there will then be a majority arab in the province as it is now and therefore things will change if
either for around them is held in the provinces when other a totally different and i'm going to sami sami what business what business does the united states and its allies have in mediating this conflict between the kurds or potential conflict when you put it that way between the kurds and the arabs in iraq i mean is it is time for the united states and its allies to get out and let the people on the ground figure out what is best for them because occupation. genders animosity we've seen that in iraq we've seen that in afghanistan we're seeing it possibly in libya. i think i had the nail on the head there most of iraq's problems today i'm an eighteen from the continued occupation of iraq and the soon out of the us led forces leave the terror with the tens of thousands of medicine that is of blackwater and the like they brought with them they are the poison of in the middle of iraqi society and i think a lot of these problems can be resolved and i don't share the opinions of your
other two guests with due respect to them that there is this enormous animosity between the arab people of iraq and the kurdish people and let me add this at this particular moment declared my principle stand towards the kurdish people the kurdish people deserve the right to self-determination and this i believe in very very strongly this right to self then are the nation cannot come under occupation it can only come within a democratic iraq where they care dish people will enjoy their right to self-determination this is something not even the kurdish leaders are daring to pronounce and to implement because that listening to washington that is throwing all their eggs into the putting all their eggs in the washington basket instead of building. good relations with the peoples of the region with the people of turkey people of iran people of iraq against oppressive regimes the future of the kurdish
people is with the peoples of the region you cannot move that the the mountains the great mountains of code to stand to washington with people of the region have to resolve their own problems without occupations of military interventions the united states is applying notice pressure on the iraqi government to maintain their forces by did made to visit american generals made statements u.s. defense secretary made a visit they are all trying to hide behind this week iraqi. regime tied to washington protected by washington they're trying to hide behind it and say ask us to stay on to say that this is a tough guy and i think. they're going to. in the last word this program here we've heard the term the arab spring is there such a thing as the kurds spring. there was a crowd of there's no. there there is an arab spring and it's a very welcome there has been already
a kurdish spring there is no occupation of the kurdistan region there are no american american soldiers present there and the american presence under his administration and stand by because it's about a regional government there is there is corruption throughout our of a rock on a much greater scale than the kurdistan region i think what you've heard me unfortunately is old fashioned arab nationalist propaganda and what is vital to understand is that iraq has just gone through an absolutely terrific intra arab civil war that was not primarily caused by the american occupation it was cause i don't think this is just journalism in a very serious guy should always run out of time for many things so my guess would be in new york and washington and london and thanks to our viewers for watching us here are to see you next time and remember crosstalk.